DCC Alumni Spotlight – Inga Van Wagoner
“Grace Under Pressure.” If you are a DCC, you know this phrase accurately represents your tenure on the team. From the moment you step foot into auditions your rookie year, until you retire, you know that staying composed, graceful, and adaptable is crucial to being a successful Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader. And after my interview with Inga Van Wagoner, she is the epitome of grace under pressure (all while making it look effortless).
As a second grader, Inga knew that she wanted to be a DCC. In fact, there is a newspaper article with that sentiment, so you truly know it was a goal placed on her heart at a young age. When she made this dream come true in 1995, she had the fairytale season that one can only hope for-ending the season by cheering at the Super Bowl. As memorable as that pinnacle was, the memories that Inga remembers most are the post game notes from Kelli (we definitely still get those), and the ice cold Sprites after games (we also still get those)! The moment after Kelli says your name, while you are waiting to hear her feedback whether good or not so good, is definitely a moment any DCC can vividly remember!
As a daughter of two West Point graduates, I know how special the respect is between DCC and the Military. I have heard countless stories of how impactful USO tours are to our servicemen and women. Inga can tell you first hand- she served in the Military prior to auditioning to become a DCC. Which one is harder you ask? According to Inga, DCC takes the cake.
If Inga’s last name sounds familiar, it is because her aunt, Paula Van Wagoner, actually designed the iconic uniforms that the DCC wear today! Quite the legacy that the Van Wagoner family holds in DCC history. Inga even had the opportunity to travel with her aunt to Washington D.C. when the uniform was inducted into the Smithsonian. Talk about a once in a lifetime experience.
Currently, Inga runs the operations for an Asthma and Allergy clinic in Dallas while also running a home with 5 kids; if this isn’t grace under pressure, I don’t know what is. Additionally, if she wasn’t busy enough, she recently graduated from the best school in the country, the University of Alabama. What makes this even more special is that her son was attending the University at the same time and he didn’t even know his mom was enrolled. As luck would have it, they graduated at the same time! Inga has and continues to do it all, and if her past tells me anything, it is that she is going to continue to exemplify grace under pressure, no matter what situation she is in! I am so proud to share the DCC sisterhood with her.